Britain has entered ‘the new era of the robber barons’, Mary Davis told the Communist Party’s executive committee at the weekend.
Emphasising the value of Marxist analysis, she declared that the so-called ‘cost of living’ crisis is, in fact, a ‘crisis of capitalism’s rate of profit’. In particular, gas and oil prices have rocketed as the industry’s producers, shippers, traders and suppliers reap enormous profits.
‘We must demolish the myths that soaring inflation in Britain has been caused by wage rises or the Ukraine War’, she argued, ‘when price rises – like wage restraint, fire-and-rehire and cuts in public services – are ruling-class remedies for their crisis. along with the tax cuts for the rich and big business now promised in the Tory leadership contest’.
With inflation set to reach a 40-year high of 11 per cent – the highest level in Europe – Ms Davis added that a massive expansion of military expenditure would stimulate inflation still more.
Drawing similarities and differences between capitalism’s crisis today and during the Labour government’s term of office in the mid- and late 1970s, she called upon Labour leader Keir Starmer to learn lessons from Prime Minister Callaghan’s ‘betrayal of the working class’.
‘Our demands must be based on raising the level of class consciousness’, she urged. and should include the nationalisation of public utilities such as gas, electricity, the railways and mail; reversing all public sector privatisation; higher taxes on the rich, cutting profits not wages, rebuilding the broad left network in the trade union movement and winning more support for the Morning Star and the Communist Party.
The CP executive urged communists and socialists to visit and support picket lines during the railway strikes on July 27 and 30 and August 18 and 20.
International secretary Kevan Nelson reported on recent contacts with the Ukrainian Communist Party (KPU) and urged left, progressive and trade union bodies to protest to the Ukrainian embassy in London against the decision of the Lviv Appeal Court to uphold the ban on the country’s Communist Party (KPU) and confiscate its assets.
Before the pro-Western Maidan coup in 2014, the KPU held 32 parliamentary seats with 13 per cent of the popular vote, then came under attack from ‘decommunisation’ laws, electoral bans and fascist-led assaults on its offices and representatives.